The UK Space sector has demonstrated that it is of key importance to the UK economy as a sector with significant growth potential. The Innovation Caucus at Sheffield University provides a range of advice and support to Innovate UK through its funding arrangements. The Innovation Caucus brought Ortus Economic Research into their team to develop a toolkit to allow existing and developing Space clusters across the UK to undertake a self-assessment of their strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats. The self-assessment will be used drive decisions on support and funding.
Our role was twofold: firstly, to assess available data related to the sector to consider whether there was an available source that could be used to quantify the size and value of local space clusters, and secondly to engage with senior sector figures through qualitative interviews and workshops in order to explore strengths and weaknesses, the degree of cluster formalisation and organisation, identify key assets and explore future strategic goals and objectives. The project delivered five case studies related to space clusters in Cornwall, Guildford, Harwell, Leicester and Scotland.